When Jerry Marino showed up at 5 pm on Friday night to prepare for Alliance Repertory Theater’s penultimate performance of “The Guys,” he found that the theater, located at 252 Liberty St. in Bloomfield, was not only locked up, but his key wouldn’t fit. Marino, who is managing director of Alliance Rep, called the landlord, got no response, and ultimately found a last-minute venue at The Coffee Club Caf√ɬ©, 151 Valley Rd., Montclair, which is owned by Alliance Rep board chair Cheri Dworkin.
Marino left people and signs at Bloomfield theater, raced over to the coffee house, created an ad hoc set and delayed the curtain by half an hour. “It’s a simple play. Two actors. Two chairs and a table,” Marino said. The production had to do without professional lighting.

Although Alliance gave members of the audience a 50 percent refund on their tickets, Marino said that people who saw the show were extremely gracious in their response.
Marino, who just announced last week that his company is moving to 180 Bloomfield Ave. in Montclair, believes the lockup occurred because the landlord is mad about the move. Alliance Rep was originally planning to take occupancy Nov. 1 but now plans to debut its next production, “The Country Club,” at the Montclair location on Oct. 22.